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Medium 9781855759442

53. Jungian

Noe Marchevsky Karnac Books ePub
Medium 9781780490977

3 - Winnicott and Kohut: Their Theories of Anxiety

Samuel Arbiser Karnac Books ePub

3

Winnicott and Kohut: their theories of anxiety

Kenneth M. Newman

Introduction

Winnicott, writing in the forties and fifties, and Kohut, who entered the scene primarily in the sixties, shifted the focus of disturbances in the self from drive-centred fixations to arrests in development. The emphasis included a shift to earlier environmental failure and faulty parental attunement to the emotional needs of the child, and therefore required different explanations for the nature and causes of anxiety. That meant that the sources of anxiety would be located at the time of structural formation, when the infant's dependence on maternal care-taking to provide the atmosphere of security and the foundation for a safe internal environment was of central importance. Traditional explanations central to the structural model and ego psychology, that stressed the individual infantile drives in conflict with the superego, became somewhat subordinate. Since the pathognomonic points of fixation were now located in the prestructural period, the Oedipus and the conflicts attendant upon its faulty solution were no longer the focal point for anxiety.

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Chapter Twenty Two: Getting too Personal

John Marzillier Karnac Books ePub

CHAPTER TWENTY TWO

Getting too personal

D r. M ushers me into his consulting room. He seems relaxed and friendly, courteous in an old-fashioned way. A certain reserve too, suitable for a psychotherapist who has just come to the end of a long and distinguished career. I imagine him doing this, week in week out, year after year, politely ushering his clients into the room, another hour-long session about to begin. I like the room immediately. It has touches of elegance in the Persian rug on the floor and the antique pedestal desk against the wall. Evidence of a working life too. The Apple Mac and printer seated on a modern beech table to my left. The bookshelves in the alcoves. A set of in-trays on a three-door filing cabinet. It feels safe here. A secure space, to use Bowlby's terminology. Very suitable for baring one's soul. Only I am not here to bare my soul. I must remember that.

A large rectangular picture on the wall over the pedestal desk catches my eye. A print in dark browns and russets of a small, mediaeval town. Italian, I guess, Tuscan or Umbrian. The square is odd-shaped, like a large horseshoe. I know where it is! Siena, and it is the Palio, the festival that takes place every year. Horsemen race furiously around the square in a colourful pageant of flags and costumes and blaring trumpets. I am ridiculously pleased to have recognized it. Then I wonder, is this a metaphor for psychotherapy? An interminable ride around an odd-looking square? Or am I looking for meanings that are not there?

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Medium 9781780490106

CHAPTER 8: The young child's education

Martha Harris Harris Meltzer Trust ePub

Parental instruction

Ours is the responsibility, now and for some time to come, for making most of the major decisions which will afect our children's lives. Tey need to trust us to know better than they do in many matters, and often, for convenience’ sake, they have to do as they are told without going into the whys and wherefores. However, that does not mean to say that, if they have any perception, we can pull the wool over their eyes to hide our imperfections and our mistakes in handling them. It's a basically very uncertain parent who always has to be right. “Do this because I tell you to” is all right for the moment when other things are clamouring for attention, and on those occasions when it's clear that an argument isn’t going to get anyone anywhere. But from a very early age, that varies from one child to another, children's interest in the connections between things leads them to want to know why we tell them to do this, forbid them to do that. Sometimes it's possible to explain, to enlist their reasoned co-operation. For little children, their fathers and mothers are in the beginning the kings and queens in the story books, sometimes benefcent, sometimes bad and unjust. Some day the children will fnd out that we are not so important in the world as they had supposed and the disillusionment is for them less of a blow, or less of a triumph, if we have not been fostering the illusion. Perhaps some readers may remember in John Hopkins’ TV series Talking to a Stranger the painful scene in which the cynical, disappointed grown-up daughter turns and accuses her father of having deceived her cruelly with fairy-tales when she was a little girl, deluding her into believing in a daddy who would take care of her and make all better. And she continued through life expecting to fnd just such a daddy and unable to forgive life and her own father for not providing her with one.

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5. The Archaic Matrix of the Oedipus Complex

Janine Chasseguet-Smirgel Karnac Books ePub

My work with perverse patients has convinced me of the existence of an archaic matrix of the Oedipus complex which I would like to distinguish from “the early stages of the Oedipal conflict” of Melanie Klein.

In order to develop my idea of this primitive core of the Oedipus complex, I shall refer here to the clinical material of patients, parts of which material have already been presented in another context. We know that, for Melanie Klein, “the sadistic phantasies directed against the inside of the (maternal) body constitute the first and basic relation to the outside world and to reality. The child expects to find within the mother a) the father’s penis b) excrement, and c) children … According to the child’s earliest phantasies (or ‘sexual theories’) of parental coitus, the father’s penis (or his whole body) becomes incorporated in the mother during the act.”1 Klein clearly establishes that there is an equivalence between the external world and the mother’s body (“The sadistic appropriation and exploration of the mother’s body and of the outside world [the mother’s body is an extended sense] …”) and between reality and the mother’s body (“In the earliest reality of the child it is no exaggeration to say that the world is a breast and a belly which is filled with dangerous objects, dangerous because of the child’s own impulse to attack them”).2

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